Catalog Archive
Auction 104, Lot 59

"Systema Ideale Quo Exprimitur Aquarum per Canales hyrdagogos subterraneos…", Kircher, Athanasius

Subject: Cartographic Miscellany

Period: 1670 (circa)


Color: Hand Color

15.8 x 14.2 inches
40.1 x 36.1 cm
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The Jesuit scholar Athanasius Kircher was one of the first compilers of semi-scientific knowledge about the physical features of the world. This unusual copper engraving shows a cross-section of the earth's interior with its magma core and underground water sources. The surface of the earth is shown with erupting volcanoes and ships sailing in the oceans. Clouds and four wind-heads surround the sphere. A decorative title cartouche completes the fanciful composition with a text panel below.


Condition: A

Overall fine with lovely color. Old paper repair on bottom centerfold, filling a couple of very tiny wormholes.

Estimate: $1,600 - $1,800

Sold for: $1,200

Closed on 9/10/2003